MHRD scraps panel to search for UGC chair­man

The Sunday Guardian - - Nation -

The Min­istry of Hu­man Re­source De­vel­op­ment (MHRD) has scrapped the search-cum-se­lec­tion (SCS) com­mit­tee formed ear­lier this year to come up with sug­ges­tions for suit­able names for ap­point­ment of chair­man of the Univer­sity Grants Com­mis­sion (UGC), sources close to the MHRD have con­firmed.

Ac­cord­ing to the sources, an un­happy MHRD scrapped the SCS panel after the com­mit­tee failed to find a name “suit­able” for the chair­man’s post ly­ing va­cant for over six months now.

Soon after the re­tire­ment of Ved Prakash from the UGC chair­man’s post in April this year, the MHRD had set up the SCS com­mit­tee, led by yoga in­struc­tor H.R. Na­gen­dra, to look into the is­sue of ap­point­ment of the UGC chair­per­son. Within two months, the com­mit­tee had short­listed four names and for­warded the same to the MHRD in June for its fi­nal ap­proval. The MHRD has the dis­cre­tion to choose one name among the fi­nal­ists for the UGC chair­man’s post.

“The SCS com­mit­tee had for­warded the names of the fi­nal­ists to the MHRD in June, but after screen­ing, the Min­istry did not find any in­di­vid­ual in the list suit­able for the UGC chair­man’s post and scrapped the SCS com­mit­tee,” a source fa­mil­iar with the de­vel­op­ment told The Sun­day Guardian.

“The short­listed names which the MHRD had re­ceived in­clude All In­dia Coun­cil for Tech­ni­cal Ed­u­ca­tion chair­man Anil Sa­hasrabudhe, Na­tional As­sess­ment and Ac­cred­i­ta­tion Coun­cil chief D.P. Singh, Ba­naras Hindu Univer­sity vice-chan­cel­lor G.C. Tri­pathi, and Delhi Tech­no­log­i­cal Univer­sity vice-chan­cel­lor Yo­gesh Singh,” the same source quoted above said.

Not only is the post of UGC chair­man va­cant, but the post of vice-chair­man is also ly­ing va­cant for over six months.

The MHRD had al­ready formed an­other SCS com­mit­tee in April this year to look into the mat­ter of ap­point­ment of UGC vice-chair­man, but the com­mit­tee is yet to send the names of the fi­nal­ists for ap­point­ment to the post.

“The MHRD is yet to re­ceive the short­listed names for the ap­point­ment of the UGC vice-chair­man and it has not given any di­rec­tion for scrap­ping of the SCS com­mit­tee formed for ap­point­ment of the vice-chair­man,” a min­istry source said. Cur­rently, V.S. Chauhan is the of­fi­ci­at­ing chair­man of the UGC.

Re­cently, the MHRD was crit­i­cised for giv­ing ex­ten­sion to Chauhan as of­fi­ci­at­ing chair­man. Pro­fes­sor Chauhan was ap­pointed of­fi­ci­at­ing chair­man on 4 April 2017 and his ten­ure came to an end in Oc­to­ber this year.

An ex­ist­ing UGC mem­ber told The Sun­day Guardian: “The ap­point­ment of the of­fi­ci­at­ing chair­man should be for a term of six months and not more than that. Ac­cord­ing to the UGC Act, 1956, a chair­man should be ap­pointed be­fore the term of the of­fi­ci­at­ing chair­man ends, but the MHRD does not seem to care much for UGC rules.”

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